RHP Joe Ross will look to get back on track Sunday afternoon, when he takes the mound for the Nationals in the finale of a four-game series against the New York Mets at Citi Field. Ross didn’t factor into the decision in his most recent start on Tuesday, when he gave up five runs on nine hits and three walks while striking out two over 5 2/3 innings as the Nationals beat the Atlanta Braves, 10-5. He was in line for the loss before the Nationals took the lead by scoring five runs in the bottom of the sixth. Ross has allowed at least five runs in five of eight starts this season. He is 1-1 with a 5.16 ERA in four career starts against the Mets.
LHP Enny Romero earned his second save of the season Saturday, when he threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings to close out the Nationals’ 7-4 win over the Mets. Romero allowed three hits and struck out one but wriggled out of jams in the eighth, which he ended by striking out the potential go-ahead run, Mets C Rene Rivera, and the ninth, when he induced Mets LF Yoenis Cespedes to hit into a game-ending double play. The save was the first since May 4 for Romero, who threw more than one inning for the 10th time in 30 games this season. Romero is 2-2 with a 3.62 ERA.
2B Daniel Murphy tormented his former club yet again Saturday, when he went 2-for-4 with an RBI double in the Nationals’ 7-4 win over the Mets. Murphy, who also singled and scored in the ninth, has reached base in all 28 games he’s played against the Mets -- whom he played for from 2008 through 2015 -- since signing with the Nationals in January 2016. He has a hit in all but one of those games and is batting a robust .396 with eight homers and 29 RBIs overall. Murphy is batting .346 with 11 homers and 46 RBIs in 63 games this season.
RHP Shawn Kelley (neck) was unavailable Saturday, when the Nationals beat the Mets, 7-4. Manager Dusty Baker said Kelley was dealing with spasms in his neck Friday night, when he displayed decreased velocity while allowing one run -- on a homer by Mets RF Jay Bruce -- in one inning. Baker said he was concerned about Kelley, who received pre-game treatment Saturday, but that it was too early to consider a disabled list stint. It has been a difficult season for Kelley, who is 3-2 with four saves and a 7.00 ERA in 22 games. Kelley was on the disabled list with a lower back strain from May 2-12.